Food is a tough and touchy subject for many people. It’s easy to say the motto “food is fuel,” but it’s tougher to live by it. Why? Because of how many of us use food as a reward. Or we use fuel as a crutch, a pick me up, or we don’t understand what our bodies were designed to have in them. This article will provide one take on healthy eating.
Several years ago, I began eating well thanks to the help of some friends. While I haven’t looked back since there are certain times where I eat better than others.
After some days of eating things that I know my body wasn’t designed for (lasagna, sauces, etc.) I decided it was time to treat my body as I should. Like a temple.
I’m not saying my body is a temple, everybody should treat their body like a temple. Their temple. Sure, my food regimen was pretty good but now I am striving for excellence. Below is some criteria that have helped me and might be able to help you too.
Ingredients: Stop paying attention to calories, fats, and other numbers. Not all fats get treated equal, different calories are empty and some are more helpful, the numbers don’t tell the entire story. When picking up a food, look at the ingredients. If you can tell what’s in it and you know those ingredients are beneficial (or at least not detrimental) then great! It passes the test for a food you might eat. If you pick up an item and see ingredients you don’t recognize, it’s time to pass. This is only the first step I like to use before seeking help elsewhere.
Fooducate: If there is any uncertainty after step 1 then I run the item through the Fooducate App (available for iPhone and Android).
This application will tell us what’s in our food, what’s good about it, and why we should avoid it (if necessary). Even when I can read the ingredients, there are still surprises at times. For instance, a certain brand of salsa I enjoy seems as clean as it could be. I know all the ingredients and they all seem healthy. Yet Fooducate pointed out that a salsa with 0% vitamin C doesn’t make sense. The reason is its ingredients should provide a decent amount of vitamin C. Now, I know I’ll avoid this salsa and make my own. This app is worth a download to your phone if you are considering eating well.
EWG: I’ve come to love the Environmental Working Group.
From informing us about healthy skin care products to their great database of food products. This company works to expose what is healthy and what is dangerous. Their Healthy Living and/or Food Scores App’s will help you make further decisions that Fooducate cannot help with. When searching for products you’ll learn about concerns with nutrition, environment, and ingredients. For instance, many rice products are grown where there might be high levels of arsenic. This app helps point out some of the subtle nuances like those. These apps come recommended and are helpful with clean eating.
Logic: Of course, logic. We usually can look at a food and know that we’re going to regret it later. While that lasagna looks fantastic, it doesn’t always sit well. Ultimately, a healthy eating regimen is up to us and only us. When faced with the decision between an apple and a slice of pizza, we know the decision we should make. Why do we allow ourselves to consume foods that make us feel terrible after? Why do we let ourselves eat foods that don’t align with our goals of losing weight, staying disease free, and feeling better?
The basics: We should make sure the following basics come from good sources. Nevertheless, they’re always better than a big piece of chocolate cake, at least in terms of health.
Stick to vegetables first, especially green and especially leafy. Fruits are next important and they are delicious. Nuts and seeds come in next, again making sure they are of a good quality. You’ll come across some beans and legumes that are great. These can provide all the nutrients that you’ll need. Feel free to run some of the extras through the above tests to see if they’re worth eating.